[ dish-waw-ter, -wot-er ]
/ ˈdɪʃˌwɔ tər, -ˌwɒt ər /


water in which dishes are, or have been, washed.


    dull as dishwater/ditchwater, extremely dull; boring.

Origin of dishwater

First recorded in 1475–85; dish + water Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for dishwater

British Dictionary definitions for dishwater


/ (ˈdɪʃˌwɔːtə) /


water in which dishes and kitchen utensils are or have been washed
something resembling thisthat was dishwater, not coffee
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for dishwater



also dish-water, "water where dishes have been washed," late 15c., from dish (n.) + water (n.). Used figuratively of weak broth, coffee, etc., from 1719.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with dishwater


see dull as dishwater.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.